A confidence problem exists on the part of the people of the region who desire democratic rule in principle, but remain suspicious of both the fashion with which democratization is presented and the purposes of the democratic world.
Invariably, also a Palestinian state should live side by side with Israel within recognized and secure borders and the security and prosperity of the Palestinian people must be guaranteed.
A lasting solution to this problem will have an exceptionally positive influence foremost on the peoples of Palestine and Israel, as well as on the region and the international community.
My visit to the United States has also given me the opportunity to emphasize the objective of establishing close and intensive links between the Turkish and American peoples, scholars and businessmen.
What should be targeted is a concept of organic, and not just mechanic, democracy that preserves the rule of law, separation of powers, and that is participatory and pluralistic.
The advanced levels which the democratic world has attained at the end of lengthy processes may have created the perception in the region that democracy is a distant concept; this perception can be addressed.
Even as we ought to accept that each country would progress with a different method and speed toward that goal, the standard for the expected end-state should not be lowered.
The US and the European Union needs to help in the translation of the demand for democracy into a political will.
Similarly, gender-equality, supremacy of law, political participation, civil society, and transparency are among the indispensable elements that are the imperatives of democratization.
The purpose cannot be creating self-styled democracies, but rather encouraging steps that are conducive to establishing democratic rule at universal standards. Obviously, this would be a formidable journey.
In this context, social consensus, and institutions that embody this consensus, must be made effective in order for democratization not to be abused as a provisional instrument to establish an anti-democratic regime.
As a politician who cherishes religious conviction in his personal sphere, but regards politics as a domain belonging outside religion, I believe that this view is seriously flawed.
I should like to repeat what I stated recently in the Jeddah Economic Forum in Saudi Arabia: It won't be the religion, but rather the world-view of some of its followers that shall be made current.
Paramount is the need to secure human rights. The form of rule should be such that the citizen does not have to fear the State, but gives it direction and confidently participates in its administration.
A fitting external security environment could also play an important role in promoting social consensus and institutionalization towards democratization.